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Crossing the Bridge-Sound of Istanbul (2005)

Alexander Hacke , Ahmed Ulug , Fatih Akin  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)

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Crossing the Bridge-Sound of Istanbul + Head-On [Gegen die Wand] + Soul Kitchen
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Product Details

  • Actors: Alexander Hacke, Ahmed Ulug, Cem Yegul, Mehmed Ulug, Baba Zula
  • Directors: Fatih Akin
  • Writers: Fatih Akin
  • Producers: Fatih Akin, Andreas Thiel, Christian Kux, Klaus Maeck, Nurhan Sekerci
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: German (Unknown)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Strand Releasing
  • DVD Release Date: September 19, 2006
  • Run Time: 90 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000GFLEM2
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #197,894 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Crossing the Bridge-Sound of Istanbul" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Trailer

Editorial Reviews

The rich musical heritage of the Turkish metropolis located between the Orient and the Occident comes to the screen in director Fatih Akin's cinematic tribute to Istanbul's thriving music scene. In bringing both historic and recent expressions of Istanbul's unique legacy of music to the screen in a documentary that strives to both inform and entertain, Akin offers compelling insight into both the creative history of the city as well as the lives of the individuals who populate it. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
42 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars fascinating musical portrait of Istanbul October 13, 2006
By reader
Format:DVD
Having been involved in preparing the soundtrack for Fatih Akin's film "Head-On" (which I highly recommend, though if you're reading this review, you probably already know it), the bass player for the legendary German rock band Einstürzende Neubauten came back to Istanbul to further explore contemporary Turkish music, which he'd gotten a taste of and liked. The result is a fascinating musical portrait of Istanbul, including gypsy music, rap (I'm no expert, but Ceza may be doing the most interesting hip-hop ever recorded outside the US), a Canadian woman (Brenna MacGrimmon) who had fallen in love with old Istanbul whorehouse ballads and learned to sing them in flawless Turkish, Turkey's superstar Sezen Aksu, the "godfather" of "Arabesque" Orhan Gencebay, as well as Kurdish, Sufi, and street musicians. For my money, this is at least as good as "The Buena Vista Social Club" and has the potential to do for Turkish music what that film did for Cuban music, given the right marketing. And by the way, the soundtrack is also available on CD.
I'd like to take the opportunity to plug some other Turkish work that I think would be interesting for fans of "Crossing the Bridge". I am very glad to see that two films ("Vizontele"Vizontele [ NON-USA FORMAT, PAL, Reg.0 Import - Germany ] and its sequel "Vizontele Tuuba"
... Read more ›
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Uneven quality but contains some great stuff August 9, 2007
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This survey of the various musical cultures of Istanbul attempts to fairly represent the enormous variety of musics in that city. It's an ambitious film that falls somewhat short, but nonetheless contains some extraordinary musical performances that make this DVD well worth buying and seeing repeatedly. I could quibble with the director over his choice to devote so much coverage to rap and heavy-metal rock musicians. The latter are especially bad, even by the standards of heavy-metal, and are basically lacking completely in any kind of musical artistry or skill. It's hard for me to comprehend how these naive and immature musical duffers could be given such a considerable amount of time in this film, which also features some truly great musical artists. The best thing for the viewer is to skip the first half of the movie and jump to the second half, where the really good stuff is. Especially strong are the performances by Selim Sesler, Brenna MacCrimmon, the great Kurdish singer Aynur, Mercan Dede, and Sezen Aksu. Unfortunately only a short amount of time was devoted to Mercan Dede, the great ney player, but he was one of the more interesting artists in the film. Aynur was certainly one of the great standouts in the film. Her performance is astoundingly beautiful and absolutely mesmerizing. Sezen Aksu is another extraordinarily beautiful singer whose performance near the end of the film is very moving. In general though the movie appears to be poorly thought out and poorly put-together. There are far too many scenes featuring the German bass-player Alexander Hacke, basically doing nothing but trying to look cool at all times, walking the streets of Istanbul or leaning out of a window overlooking the city while smoking a cigarette. Read more ›
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing !!! January 11, 2007
Format:DVD
This is a great documentary film about music and musicians in Istanbul. All different kinds of music. Not just traditional but pop, rock, jazz, hip-hop, classical, vocals, instrumental..... and many different kinds of instruments too. Istanbul is an interesting place. It has western and eastern influence. This film is quite different from the image that you see on the cover. So, forget about the picture of the cover and just try watching. It is COOL.

Seattle
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
By Galina
Format:DVD
German-born Turkish director Faith Akin captures in his film the endless variety of the different styles in music and songs in Istanbul, a city that is a bridge between East and West, a city that is uniquely located on both sides of the Bosporus, in Europe and in Asia. Kurdish dirges represented by Aynur, who performs her own brand of Kurdish gospel music, passionate and melodic. We are introduced to Romany instrumentals, to Orhan Gencebay, who has been called the Elvis of Arabesque music - sounds of music are heard everywhere in the city as Faith Akin takes us into underground clubs, to the street performers, and to recording sessions. German bassist Alexander Hacke who comes to Istanbul to play and to learn about Turkish music quotes Confucius, "To understand the place, you have to listen to the music it plays". Akin's fine documentary does just that - gives us 90 minutes of music that helps to cross the bridges. For me, watching the movie was especially interesting because I recently visited Istanbul as a part of my vacation and spent four days there. The city fascinated me by its images, colors, crowds, vibrancy and visual beauty. Now, I can add the sounds of music to the ever-changing portrait of Istanbul
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful film
If you are a fan of music, or a fan of Istanbul, or a fan of both, you'll enjoy this documentary. It profiles several artists of varying genres which gives you a holistic... Read more
Published 6 months ago by Artsy Emma
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must See for Music Lovers!
Absolutely riveting documentary about the music scene around Turkey. One of the best music docs I've ever seen. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Sally Dodd
2.0 out of 5 stars Somewhat interesting, but not worthy of more then 2 stars
This movie is interesting, but a long shot from the 4 and 5 star reviews that made me give it a view. I have traveled to Turkey and loved the country. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Sharon Jacobs
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful fun, documentary
Faith Akin shows yet another side of his amazing talent.

Sandwiched between his two brilliant dramas 'Head On', and 'Edge of
Heaven', this is a fun, infectious... Read more
Published on June 9, 2010 by K. Gordon
3.0 out of 5 stars Good music in bad documentary
Watch it for the music, which is stunning and diverse, but try to tune out Alexander Haacke's painfully self-conscious posturing through this film, which positions him less as a... Read more
Published on April 26, 2010 by Jubal Howe
5.0 out of 5 stars you will end up going to Istanbul like me :)
I always dreamed of visiting Istanbul but when I watched this movie in a theater, years ago, I realized how rich the local culture was. Read more
Published on November 27, 2009 by Rene De Paula Jr.
4.0 out of 5 stars Not as diverse as I expected
Ok, this shows the music of contemporary Istanbul, but the case is made early on that very exciting new things were happening. Read more
Published on November 26, 2009 by Bradley F. Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars video music documentary
This is a trip transcending so many levels. This incredible video music documentary captures the incredible clash of ancient and stra-modern that takes place in the magical and... Read more
Published on May 5, 2009 by Evan F. Grosz
4.0 out of 5 stars Eclectic but interesting Intro
Fairly modern - does not do a lot of music history or exploration of Eastern forms (what i was expecting) It is more of a sampler of what is happening with the music scenes in a... Read more
Published on December 7, 2008 by AnnetteV2
3.0 out of 5 stars Good Music but....
I left the movie feeling like I saw way too much of German bass-player Alexander Hacke. He lurks in every scene, smoking cigarettes, playing with his hair, and just generally... Read more
Published on September 14, 2008 by Films McMoviewatcher
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